Workplace Health and Safety
Fresh HR Insights is delighted to announce the formation of a strategic partnership with Emilio Barlin who has joined us as our Workplace Health and Safety Consultant.
Workplace Health and safety is a big topic and we know that many of you are unsure where to start.
Over the coming months we are going to do a series of articles on helping you improve the health & safety performance of your operations, regardless of your industry, so let’s go!!
You know your health & safety probably isn’t quite where it should be but what is the first step in starting to improve it? That depends on factors such as location, industry and experience of staff BUT, normally, identifying the hazards in your workplace and your operations is a great place to start.
How? There are many ways to approach this but for most businesses the simplest way is to just ask!!
Either at an upcoming meeting, during a general discussion with one or more team members or something a little more structured such as a short 5-10 minute safety meeting with the sole purpose of identifying the 3-5 most obvious or dangerous hazards as seen by each person. Sure, it can be a bit of a dry subject but once you get started you will be surprised what comes up.
The great part about this approach is it can be as formal or informal as you like, it doesn’t normally take a lot of time or resources and you will be on your way to making your operations safer as well as proving to a site inspector that you are taking a pro-active approach which is a big part of the current regulatory requirements.
Fresh HR Insights with Emilio on board can assist you in this process if you would like someone to guide the team in looking for any areas that may be missed or to get the ball rolling right from the start.
Obviously hazards vary from industry to industry but some of the more common areas are:
- Exposed wires on electrical leads and fittings due to being crimped by furniture or being pulled too hard from the socket;
- Flammable items not stored, secured or labelled properly;
- Inadequately trained or experienced staff undertaking tasks that are beyond their current competency (eg, a trainee or new starter is introduced to fellow workers and his tasks and basically left to work unsupervised from day one);
- Manual handling & lifting of items that should be either a shared load or assisted with say a trolley or mechanical assistance;
- Repetitive operations leading to muscle and other strains/ tears;
- Inadequate setup of the workplace, everything from lighting, desks and workstations through to design of workflow;
- Tripping hazards, especially in office environments;
- Long term hearing damage;
- Inadequate visual awareness of people moving through work areas, yes everyone seems to be wearing high vis in industry these days but the fact is, it saves lives.
TIP: Remember, Workplace Health & Safety inspectors will always want to see evidence of your hazard identification process, so spend 20 minutes and start with this and you are on your way!!
If you would like information on how our Workplace Health and safety Management System can work for you then contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org